I got the RUST stuff right at the end of Stage 7. I've found it's a good time for it, because in the stage 8 practice schedule, he lists practicing all the strumming patterns though pattern 16. Without the RUST 1 stuff, I wouldn't have known what to do or what exactly to practice. I think waiting until after the whole beginner course is a little too late, because then the first half is too easy, although forcing myself to play it with a metronome makes it a little more challenging. I'm thinking of doing RUST 2 after i finish the Beginner course. So close now, halfway through stage 8. These later stages definitely take more practice of everything, so I think it's another 2-3 months to finish.